70 episodes

French history is wacky, wonderful - and seriously weird. If the only thing you know about French history is that you hated reading A Tale of Two Cities in high school, pour yourself a glass of pinot noir and get ready for a wild ride. Learn about the time France ran out of cows - and figured out how to eat zebras. Learn about the eccentric national hero keeping bees on top of the Louvre. Learn about the revolution which fought for brotherhood, equality, and a national holiday for marshmallows! New episodes every few weeks! /// Featured on iTunes Buzzed About, CBC/Radio-Canada, Bello Collective, and The Audit.

The Land of Desire: French History and Cultur‪e‬ Diana Stegall

    • History
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French history is wacky, wonderful - and seriously weird. If the only thing you know about French history is that you hated reading A Tale of Two Cities in high school, pour yourself a glass of pinot noir and get ready for a wild ride. Learn about the time France ran out of cows - and figured out how to eat zebras. Learn about the eccentric national hero keeping bees on top of the Louvre. Learn about the revolution which fought for brotherhood, equality, and a national holiday for marshmallows! New episodes every few weeks! /// Featured on iTunes Buzzed About, CBC/Radio-Canada, Bello Collective, and The Audit.

    67. Marcel & Celeste, Part II

    67. Marcel & Celeste, Part II

    “Proust n’a aime que deux personnes, sa mere et Celeste.” – Prince Antoine Bibesco



    What better way to “celebrate” a year of sheltering in place than a closer look at France’s most famous social distancer? This week, I’m looking at the curious relationship between the eccentric, reclusive writer, Marcel Proust, and his beloved housekeeper-confidant, Céleste Albaret. Together, the two hunkered down into a mostly nocturnal life of writing, collaborating, and remembering while the world outside became incomprehensible. It’s the ultimate experiment in working from home – if your Uber Eats came from the Hotel Ritz, that is! Here’s the conclusion of our two part history of Marcel & Céleste. (Listen to part one here: 66. Marcel & Celeste, Part I.)

    Episode 67: “Marcel & Celeste, Part II”













    The Bedrooms of Marcel Proust



     



    The formidable Céleste Albaret





    Farewell, Marcel



     

    Sources:

    The two biggies:



    * Marcel Proust: A Life, William Carter, 2013.

    * Monsieur Proust, Celeste Albaret, 2003. (Screw those reviewers, reading this book was a joy, I loved it.)



    The rest:



    * “Marcel Proust and the medicine of the Belle Epoque” pamphlet, the Royal Society of Medicine: https://www.rsm.ac.uk/media/2060/marcel-proust-exhibition-booklet.pdf

    * Lamont, Rosette, and Céleste Albaret. “Interview Avec Céleste Albaret.” The French Review, vol. 44, no. 1, 1970, pp. 15–33. JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/385924. Accessed 25 Mar. 2021.

    * “In the Footsteps of Marcel Proust” William Friedkin, The New York Times, https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/15/t-magazine/william-friedkin-marcel-proust.html

    * Boym, Svetlana. “Nostalgia and its discontents.” The Hedgehog Review, vol. 9, no. 2, 2007, p. 7+. Gale Academic OneFile, link.gale.com/apps/doc/A168775861/AONE?u=sfpl_main&sid=AONE&xid=9c209110. Accessed 25 Mar. 2021.

    * Manley, Janet. “Longing for a Distant Home Amid a Pandemic.” New York Times, 14 Sept. 2020, p. B6(L). Gale Academic OneFile, link.gale.com/apps/doc/A635356510/AONE?u=sfpl_main&sid=AONE&xid=115d21c9. Accessed 25 Mar. 2021.

    * “these were the days; OPINION.” Globe & Mail [Toronto, Canada], 11 July 2020, p. O1,O6,O7. Gale Academic OneFile, link.gale.com/apps/doc/A629146415/AONE?u=sfpl_main&sid=AONE&xid=6f8acd35. Accessed 25 Mar. 2021.



    Further reading:



    * “How I Came to Love My Epic Quarantine Reading Project”, Oliver Munday, The Atlantic, https://www.theatlantic.com/culture/archive/2020/11/reading-proust-in-search-of-lost-time-during-pandemic/616850/

    * “Analogue Ambles: Marcel Proust’s Dark Room”, Adam Scovell, February 10 2019, https://www.caughtbytheriver.net/2019/02/marcel-prousts-dark-room/

    * Kear, Jon (2007) Une Chambre Mentale: Proust’s Solitude. In: Hendrix, Harald, ed. Writers’ Houses and the Making of Memory. Routledge, New York/Oxon, pp. 221-235. ISBN 978-0-415-95742-7



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    Want more French history and pop culture in your life? Subscribe to the Land of Desire newsletter. The revamped newsletter comes in two flavors: free and paid. Free subscribers receive one newsletter per quarter; paid subscribers receive at least one newsletter per month. Subscribe to the newsletter here.

    • 25 min
    66. Marcel & Celeste, Part I

    66. Marcel & Celeste, Part I

    “Proust n’a aime que deux personnes, sa mere et Celeste.” – Prince Antoine Bibesco



    What better way to “celebrate” a year of sheltering in place than a closer look at France’s most famous social distancer? This week, I’m looking at the curious relationship between the eccentric, reclusive writer, Marcel Proust, and his beloved housekeeper-confidant, Céleste Albaret. Together, the two hunkered down into a mostly nocturnal life of writing, collaborating, and remembering while the world outside became incomprehensible. It’s the ultimate experiment in working from home – if your Uber Eats came from the Hotel Ritz, that is!

    Episode 66: “Marcel & Celeste, Part I”













    The Bedrooms of Marcel Proust



     



    The formidable Céleste Albaret



    Farewell, Marcel



     

    Sources:

    The two biggies:



    * Marcel Proust: A Life, William Carter, 2013.

    * Monsieur Proust, Celeste Albaret, 2003. (Screw those reviewers, reading this book was a joy, I loved it.)



    The rest:



    * “Marcel Proust and the medicine of the Belle Epoque” pamphlet, the Royal Society of Medicine: https://www.rsm.ac.uk/media/2060/marcel-proust-exhibition-booklet.pdf

    * Lamont, Rosette, and Céleste Albaret. “Interview Avec Céleste Albaret.” The French Review, vol. 44, no. 1, 1970, pp. 15–33. JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/385924. Accessed 25 Mar. 2021.

    * “In the Footsteps of Marcel Proust” William Friedkin, The New York Times, https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/15/t-magazine/william-friedkin-marcel-proust.html

    * Boym, Svetlana. “Nostalgia and its discontents.” The Hedgehog Review, vol. 9, no. 2, 2007, p. 7+. Gale Academic OneFile, link.gale.com/apps/doc/A168775861/AONE?u=sfpl_main&sid=AONE&xid=9c209110. Accessed 25 Mar. 2021.

    * Manley, Janet. “Longing for a Distant Home Amid a Pandemic.” New York Times, 14 Sept. 2020, p. B6(L). Gale Academic OneFile, link.gale.com/apps/doc/A635356510/AONE?u=sfpl_main&sid=AONE&xid=115d21c9. Accessed 25 Mar. 2021.

    * “these were the days; OPINION.” Globe & Mail [Toronto, Canada], 11 July 2020, p. O1,O6,O7. Gale Academic OneFile, link.gale.com/apps/doc/A629146415/AONE?u=sfpl_main&sid=AONE&xid=6f8acd35. Accessed 25 Mar. 2021.



    Further reading:



    * “How I Came to Love My Epic Quarantine Reading Project”, Oliver Munday, The Atlantic, https://www.theatlantic.com/culture/archive/2020/11/reading-proust-in-search-of-lost-time-during-pandemic/616850/

    * “Analogue Ambles: Marcel Proust’s Dark Room”, Adam Scovell, February 10 2019, https://www.caughtbytheriver.net/2019/02/marcel-prousts-dark-room/

    * Kear, Jon (2007) Une Chambre Mentale: Proust’s Solitude. In: Hendrix, Harald, ed. Writers’ Houses and the Making of Memory. Routledge, New York/Oxon, pp. 221-235. ISBN 978-0-415-95742-7



    Subscribe to the newsletter

    Want more French history and pop culture in your life? Subscribe to the Land of Desire newsletter. The revamped newsletter comes in two flavors: free and paid. Free subscribers receive one newsletter per quarter; paid subscribers receive at least one newsletter per month. Subscribe to the newsletter here.

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    • 32 min
    65. A Trip to the Spa

    65. A Trip to the Spa

    “The waters of Vichy…gave me back my strength.” – Madame de Sévigné



    The darkest days of winter are here, and I think it’s time we all indulged in a little self-care, non? My own quarantine hobby, skincare, set me down a particular path. Why was I spraying my face with thermal spa water from France? What is thermal spa water? Why do we drink thermal spa water? Does any of it really do anything? France loves her thermal spas, no matter what form they take: rustic watering hole, glamorous resort, or rigorous medical establishment. 

    Episode 65: “A Trip to the Spa”













    The history of French thermal spas:



     



     



    Sources:



    * Weisz, George. “Spas, Mineral Waters, and Hydrological Science in Twentieth-Century France.” Isis, vol. 92, no. 3, 2001, pp. 451–483. JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/3080730. Accessed 24 Feb. 2021.

    * Tilton, Elizabeth Meier. “Mineral and Thermal Spas in France.” The French Review, vol. 54, no. 4, 1981, pp. 566–572. JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/391139. Accessed 24 Feb. 2021.

    * Brockliss, L.W.B. “The Development of the Spa in Seventeenth-Century France.” Medical History, Supplement No. 10 1990, pp. 23-47. https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/85a4/4c6b9caab12ded2f94ae0a354da2e1e372d4.pdf

    *

    van Tubergen A, van der Linden S. “A brief history of spa therapy.” Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases 2002; 61:273-275.



    * Palmer, Richard. “‘In This Our Lightye and Learned Tyme’: Italian Baths in the Era of the Renaissance.” Medical History, vol. 34, no. S10, 1990, pp. 14–22., doi:10.1017/S0025727300070964.

    * Erfurt, Patricia J. “An assessment of the role of natural hot and mineral springs in health, wellness and recreational tourism.” PhD thesis, James Cook University, 2011. https://researchonline.jcu.edu.au/31110/1/31110_Erfurt_2011_thesis.pdf

    * Debus, Allen G. “Solution Analyses Prior to Robert Boyle.” Chymia, vol. 8, 1962, pp. 41–61. JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/27757217. Accessed 24 Feb. 2021.

    * Gordon, Bertram. (2012). Reinventions of a spa town: the unique case of Vichy. Journal of Tourism History. 4. 35-55. 10.1080/1755182X.2012.671377.

    * Lagrange, Joel. “Aix-les-Bains, the creation of the City of Water and publicity.” Histoire Urbaine, vol 3, 2019, pp 129-152.

    * Marie-Eve Férérol, « Lust, tranquillity and sensuality in French spa towns in the heyday of balneotherapy (the belle époque and the roaring twenties) », Via [En ligne], 11-12 | 2017, mis en ligne le 14 mai 2018, consulté le 24 février 2021. URL : http://journals.openedition.org/viatourism/1763 ; DOI : https://doi.org/10.4000/viatourism.1763

    * Mackaman, Douglas P. “Competing Visions of Urban Grandeur: Planning and Developing Nineteeth-Century Spa Towns in France.” New Directions in Urban History, 2000, pp 41-64.

    * Brei, V.A. (2018), How is a bottled water market created?. WIREs Water, 5: e1220. https://doi.org/10.1002/wat2.1220

    * Cacciapuoti, Sara et al. “The Role of Thermal Water in Chronic Skin Diseases Management: A Review of the Literature.” Journal of clinical medicine vol. 9,9 3047. 22 Sep. 2020, doi:10.3390/jcm9093047

    * “Our Rich History.” Avène website. https://www.aveneusa.com/history



    Subscribe to the newsletter

    Want more French history and pop culture in your life? Subscribe to the Land of Desire newsletter. The revamped newsletter comes in two flavors: free and paid. Free subscribers receive one newsletter per quarter; paid subscribers receive at least one newsletter per month. Subscribe to the newsletter here.

    • 45 min
    64. Louis Pasteur and The History of the Vaccine

    64. Louis Pasteur and The History of the Vaccine

    “I think my hand will tremble,“ – Louis Pasteur



    Happy New Year! The Land of Desire is BACK with an exciting – and hopeful – story to set us off on the right track in 2021. Your happy host gets to indulge her love of epidemiology a little bit without leaving you depressed in the middle of a pandemic (she swears). This week, we’re taking a look at one of the greatest French inventions of all time. Along the way, we’ll encounter Catholic masses for dogs, the worst cruise you’ve ever heard of, and a man who came a bit too close to becoming a true mad scientist, Louis Pasteur. We’re at a turning point in medical science, so what better time to look back at how far we’ve come? This week, join me for a closer look at the history of the vaccine.

    Episode 64: “Louis Pasteur and the History of the Vaccine”













    The history of the vaccine:



     



     



     



    Further reading:



    * “Louis Pasteur’s risky move to save a boy from almost certain death” Dr. Howard Markel, PBS Newshour.

    * “The Promise of mRNA Vaccines” Diana Kwon, The Scientist.



    Sources:



    * Rabid: A Cultural History of the World’s Most Diabolical Virus – Bill Wasick, Monica Murphy

    * Illness as Metaphor and AIDS And Its Metaphors – Susan Sontag

    * “The first live attenuated vaccines” Caroline Barranco, Nature Research.

    * Alberer M, Gnad-Vogt U, Hong HS, Mehr KT, Backert L, Finak G, Gottardo R, Bica MA, Garofano A, Koch SD, Fotin-Mleczek M, Hoerr I, Clemens R, von Sonnenburg F. Safety and immunogenicity of a mRNA rabies vaccine in healthy adults: an open-label, non-randomised, prospective, first-in-human phase 1 clinical trial. Lancet. 2017 Sep 23;390(10101):1511-1520. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(17)31665-3. Epub 2017 Jul 25. PMID: 28754494.

    * “22 Orphans Gave Up Everything to Distribute the World’s First Vaccine” Sam Kean, The Atlantic.

    * Velasco-Villa A, Mauldin MR, Shi M, et al. The history of rabies in the Western Hemisphere. Antiviral Res. 2017;146:221-232. doi:10.1016/j.antiviral.2017.03.013

    * Kete, Kathleen. “La Rage and the Bourgeoisie: The Cultural Context of Rabies in the French Nineteenth Century.” Representations, no. 22, 1988, pp. 89–107. JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/2928412. Accessed 21 Jan. 2021.

    * Historical Perspective of Rabies in Europe and the Mediterranean Basin A.A. King, A.R. Fooks, M. Aubert, A.I. Wandeler (Eds.). OIE, Paris, 2004.

    * “The Rabies Vaccine Backstory” Catherine Offord, The Scientist, June 1 2016.

    * Smith, Kendall A. “Louis pasteur, the father of immunology?.” Frontiers in immunology vol. 3 68. 10 Apr. 2012, doi:10.3389/fimmu.2012.00068

    * The first rabies vaccination in humans, Rino Rappuoli, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Aug 2014, 111 (34) 12273; DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1414226111

    * Hansen, Bert. “America’s First Medical Breakthrough: How Popular Excitement about a French Rabies Cure in 1885 Raised New Expectations for Medical Progress.” The American Historical Review, vol. 103, no. 2, 1998, pp. 373–418. JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/2649773. Accessed 21 Jan.

    • 43 min
    Jeanne de Clisson and the Black Fleet

    Jeanne de Clisson and the Black Fleet

    Just in time for spooky season - ooh, lady pirates. Learn the tale of Jeanne de Clisson and the Black Fleet: piracy, treachery...and blood-soaked revenge!

    • 42 min
    Surya Bonaly

    Surya Bonaly

    The story of Surya Bonaly, France's innovative, infamous anti-ice princess. Was she a victim of racism, a squandered talent, or simply ahead of her time? And will anyone ever dare to attempt her signature move?

    • 50 min

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